How to: Demolish a truss bridge

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43 Responses to “How to: Demolish a truss bridge”

  1. dioptase says:

    They managed to blow it moments before the Germans were due to cross over, thwarting their invasion.

    • If you had ever been to that part of Texas you would know that the Germans invaded it long ago. It was a majority German area until fairly recently. Still, funny comment.

      And it was very warm last week. Been cold the last couple of days though.

  2. xtophr says:

    Something, something 911-truth.

    • MrScience says:

      Thank you for this! Was thinking of doing something like this… glad to see they chose good music. And now you can see why one part of the truss is not in the river!

    • Donald Petersen says:

      Most excellent!  All my day needs now would be a Go-Pro POV from an RC racer zipping across the bridge at the moment of detonation, but I guess some spoilsport would have discouraged anything radio-controlled from being near a bridge wired with explosives.

      I, for one, would accept any interference caused.  That’s why they don’t put me in charge.

    • Wayne Dyer says:

      What’s great is after you see the slow motion version, go back and see the first one, and you can see the loops of det cord clearly that you probably missed before.  The Gorilla/Basketball effect.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJG698U2Mvo

  3. xzzy says:

    It seems pretty nuts that they decided the most efficient way to remove a bridge is blow it up and spend months dragging the remains out of the river.. during which period I’ll assume no river traffic will be allowed to pass through.

    Or maybe they load an electromagnet crane onto a barge and hoover the scraps up?

  4. nixiebunny says:

    It’s easier to use an electromagnet on a boat than to hang workers over the water with cutting torches.

    A lot easier.

  5. Just_Ok says:

    kinda looks like most of it is still there

  6. huskerdont says:

    I liked the part where it blew up.

  7. rmverdi says:

    They did the same thing in my home town a few years back. New bridge is behind old bridge.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmdf2ijvYnY

  8. Gilbert Wham says:

     “it’s warm enough in Texas that multiple gentlemen could watch a bridge explode from the comfort of their jet skis”
    Fun as that would assuredly be, I’d settle for ‘warm enough for liquid water to actually be a thing’ right now… :(

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      Funnily enough, I’d settle for ‘cold enough for liquid water to actually be a thing’. I’ve tried putting ice on my outdoor plants to slow-water on hot days, but it evaporates without ever liquifying enough to drip.

  9. G Cardenas says:

    The explosion actually knocked out power and telephone service in the surrounding area.

  10. Rachel Hall says:

    Guys, its Texas… It could be 20F out there and some good ol boy from “a big college with very “high class” engineering students” would be out there on his jet ski trying to get the best angle on the boom. All things are possible with a little whiskey and coke.

  11. MrScience says:

    I’m a bit curious about the two separate sound events. Frequency shouldn’t account that much for  to alter the speed of sound… and you can see that the main explosions are happening before the charges are all finished triggering, yet you can hear that the initial sound is finished before the main charges go off.

    • Preston Sturges says:

      I wonder if there wasn’t an electromagnetic (plasma) discharge from the metal being sheared that showed up on the video as a crackling static long before the sound got there. 

      • MrScience says:

        That’d be a heck of a powerful EM blast (though maybe the bridge could be an antenna). What makes me think that’s not the case here is that the high frequency sound is delayed from the light itself, just not as much as the lower frequency explosion.

        Maybe there was a loud device closer to the camera that was triggering the charges in a rapid fashion (loud relays?).

  12. MikeB says:

    lake champlain bridge demolition. watch until the end to see the wave come in and break up the ice in front of the camera.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CYTdVuLeg7k

  13. Preston Sturges says:

    It looked like the whole thing was triggered with det cord rather than electrically.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Detonating_cord

    “……… With the PETN exploding at a rate of approximately 4 miles per second, any common length of det cord appears to explode instantaneously. It is a high-speedfuse which explodes, rather than burns, and is suitable for detonating high explosives, usually pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN, Pentrite). …. It is used to reliably and inexpensively chain together multiple explosive charges. Typical uses include mining, drilling, demolitions, and warfare…..”

    • Yeah, I’m guessing that the glowing loops that you can see progressing ahead of the explosions are the det cord.  I will point out that a trail of gunpower laid on the floor goes pretty quickly too.  Not 4miles per second, but more FOOM! than sizzle.  You’re not going to out run it.

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